MUSIC

Have a Punk Christmas with Brent Butler's "Brooklyn Christmas Eve"

The Brooklyn-based songwriter is the #ZackMorrisofRap.

What says Christmas in Brooklyn better than a chorus of, "Light up my Christmas tree like a cigarette / We don't need eggnog / We've got Jameson?"

The punk sound of Brent Butler's Christmas ode captures the vibrant energy of the borough. Butler's feverish guitar riffs, clever melody, and charmingly off-kilter lyrics celebrate youth and independence in the face of holiday drudgery. "Well the magic starts to fade from this TV holiday / Yeah, I guess it ain't the same as when you're young," he croons. "Unemployed, so we got no shopping bags / But we're happy with the little things we have / Radio says this is the best time of the year / But my wish is for summer to appear." The song shifts from anthemic verses about reckless youth to earnest sentiment, "It doesn't matter where you're from / we're at home right now," he sings.

Influenced by the likes of The Pogues and Green Day, Butler is the self-proclaimed "#ZackMorrisofRap." Also called the #DavidBowieofHipHop, his concept album The Cold Press, released in 2015 with Bronx-born rapper Deascent, is considered a "hip hopera" for its narrative quality, weaving a story throughout each song. Butler released his debut EP Lilac in 2018, blending hip-hip, alternative rock, and pop punk in a genre-bending experience as unique as it is ambitious.

Find Butler's latest music on Apple Music or Spotify.


Find Brent Butler on SoundCloud | Instagram | Twitter

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On This Day: Shakira Liberated Everyone's “She Wolf”

"I was in the studio in a bad mood that day, then I got inspired and went to a corner and I wrote the lyrics and the melody in 10 minutes. The image of the she wolf just came to my head, and when I least expected it I was howling and panting," Shakira said.

By Fabio Alexx

11 years ago, on July 10th, 2009, Colombian singer Shakira released the first single off her third studio album.

"She Wolf" is a synth-pop banger built on a B minor progression. It was, in many ways, an insane song, born out of the singer's own frustration and ennui.

"I was in the studio in a bad mood that day, then I got inspired and went to a corner and I wrote the lyrics and the melody in 10 minutes. The image of the she wolf just came to my head, and when I least expected it I was howling and panting," Shakira said.

Though the music was composed by John Hill and Sam Endicott, lead singer of post-punk band The Bravery, the lyrics were all Shakira's own. "[Shakira] contacted him (Hill), asking if he had any stuff," said Endicott. "We never had her in mind. We just made the thing independently of her, and then she liked it a lot, and she sang over it. She used some of the melodies we put in there and then wrote these crazy lyrics about being a werewolf. And that's how it happened."

Shakira - She Wolf www.youtube.com


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Here's How I Survived The Holidays With South Beach

Eggnog couldn't get to me this year.

Every year, I would be super healthy in the weeks leading up to Christmas and Thanksgiving, only to have all my hard work undone by my aunt's homemade pies and all the classic trimmings (stuffing is my downfall!).

I've struggled with weight loss for years. I've been on many, many fad diets – low-carb, low calorie, juice cleanses — you name it. I couldn't stick to anything, especially during the holidays.

Every year, I would be super healthy in the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving and Christmas, only to have all my hard work undone by my aunt's homemade pies and all the classic trimmings (stuffing is my downfall!).

So in September, I assumed this year would be the same until a friend suggested The South Beach Diet.

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The great thing about South Beach is that you don't have to completely restrict your favorite foods either. Their menu includes items like chocolate shakes and caramel bars—curbing my cravings while keeping me on track with my diet plan.

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I'm not going to lie, when I started the South Beach Diet, I worried that I couldn't sustain it. Yet, I've been on the South Beach Diet for two months, and it's been amazing because for the first time ever, I'm actually sticking to a diet. I've wanted to try the keto lifestyle for a while, but the South Beach diet is better because it ships me everything I need- no thinking required!

Although I'm so excited about my progress, I'm nervous because the holidays are coming. How am I going to stay South Beach strong despite all those dinner parties and plates of homemade festive treats?

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During past diets, the holidays were always my downfall. But South Beach makes bridging the holidays easy as apple pie. The South Beach Grocery Guide recommends exactly what to buy to stay on track with my weight loss goals.

At lunchtime, I enjoy the South Beach Chicken with Apricot Glaze, and when I go to a dinner party, I make sure to stick to the South Beach lifestyle principles. With all of these tools, South Beach definitely makes staying healthy easier than what I've tried in the past.

Throughout the holidays, I can still treat myself to some holiday foods in moderation. So I ate Thanksgiving turkey - by simply skipping the stuffing.

On Christmas Day, I plan on whipping up my traditional eggnog—but swapping in Stevia instead of loads of sugar, and it's just as yummy as my regular eggnog! I can even enjoy a dry wine with dinner.

By following South Beach's clear instructions and principles, I was able to reach my goal AND maintain it through the holiday celebrations. I can't believe I didn't try it sooner.

I'd recommend The South Beach Diet to anyone who has struggled with dieting, or is thinking about trying keto. They give you the tools needed to reach your goal weight and maintain healthy living long term.

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